Dog training is a necessary part of pet ownership, especially when you live in an urban or suburban area. Dogs need to learn to respect you as their pack leader. The good news is that they are eager to understand and do as you ask. Here are three ideas that you should consider when training your furry, four-legged companion and friend.

Voice Commands

Getting started with voice commands starts with giving your dog a name. Repeat the name to your dog several times while you have their attention. When they respond, lovingly pat your dog, and the first couple of times, give them a treat. Discontinue treats when your dog comes to you without needing to be lured with a treat. Always give a pat when the dog responds correctly. From this foundation, continue with voice commands, such as stay, come, sit, and so on. You may also find it useful to use a dog clicker to help train your dog.

How to Socialize With Other Dogs

Dogs tend to be territorial as well as protective of their pack, which includes you. They need to learn how not to attack another dog if you do not show signs of danger. Before you have your dog socialize with lots of other dogs in a public setting, your dog needs to practice in a lower distraction environment first. If you have a friend or family member who is a dog owner, start with a one-on-one dog introduction. Encourage good social behavior, quickly discouraging anti-social interchanges, starting with separation and a scolding tone while having the dog’s attention.

How to Respect Your Property

First of all, chewing is a natural way that puppies learn about their world. To get them to understand what they can chew is the trick. Dog toys generally work well. Chew toys with peanut butter makes a distinction. Do not use old socks or shoes as a chew toy because this may cause some confusion with the dog. Keeping your items out of reach will save heartache during the training. Walk your outside property line with the dog to show boundaries.

Your dog is eager to please you and needs an opportunity to do this often. Positive reinforcement will create a deep bond between your dog and you, while negative reinforcement will shatter that bond. Knowing that the dog is eager to please gives you the foundation for a wonderful relationship.

If you’re getting a new puppy, here are some more great tips: Room for One More: What to Keep In Mind When Getting a Puppy